Pollux 2 Inertial Navigation System
Micro-miniature inertial navigation system for Unmanned Aerial and Land Applications

Pollux 2

POLLUX 2 – NS10 Micro-miniature INS-GPS system

Micro-miniature MEMS INS-GPS for Unmanned Aerial and Land Applications

Aeron’s Micro-miniature Pollux 2 INS is a family of compact Inertial Navigation Systems. The system runs Aeron’s proprietary Kalman filter based parameter estimation engine offering near tactical performance providing superior estimates of navigation parameters including position, velocities, attitude and heading. Pollux 2 features tri-axial MEMS solid state accelerometers, tri-axial gyroscopes, barometer for altitude measurement and magnetometer for heading measurement and an integrated multi-constellation GNSS.


Pollux 2 is very compact, has low SWAP and can fit in the applications where space is a constraint. Due to the small size yet superior performance it can be used in the micro UAVs, target drones, fixed wing as well as VTOL UAVs and even UGVs and UUVS for control and navigation applications. The Pollux INS can be easily integrated with professional autopilots to improve the autopilot performance. The PLX2-NS10 model offers 2 m CEP position accuracy and 0.2 m/s velocity accuracy. The NS10 is deployed on many unmanned platforms and is being used by several global UAV customers.

Key Features

Micro-Miniature SWAP

~80gm (45mX45mmX20mm) making it suitable for a platforms where size/weight are a constraint

Near-Tactical Performance

To give highly accurate position info in GNSS denied conditions

Precise attitude and position data

To enable its use in autonomous navigation.

Pollux-NS-10
NS10

External Aiding Inputs

Accepts external odometer, airspeed aiding data

High Shock Sustainability

40 ‘g’ shock sustainance promises performance in challenging environments

High Update Rate

50Hz Navigation Solution, 200Hz Raw Sensor data making it suitable for high dynamic applications

Communication

RS232/RS422/USB/1PPS

Technical Specifications

PLX 2 NS10

Range

± 16g

PLX 2 NS10

Range

±450°/s

PLX 2 NS10

Range

±8 gauss

PLX 2 NS10

Range

300-1200 hPa

Accuracy

±0.5 hPa

PLX 2 NS10

Roll Range

±180°

Pitch Range

±90°

Roll, Pitch Accuracy

0.1° RMS (static), 0.2° RMS (dynamic)

Angle Resolution

0.01°

PLX 2 NS10

Range

±180°

Accuracy

<0.3° RMS with GNSS in dynamic conditions1
<0.5° RMS with magnetometer2,3

Angle Resolution

0.01°

PLX 2 NS10

Horizontal Position

2 m CEP with GNSS,

1.5 m CEP with SBAS

Vertical Position

5 m (1σ) with GNSS

Velocity

0.2 m/s RMS

PLX 2 NS10

Type

72 channels L1, GNSS (GPS, GLONASS, Beidou, Galileo, SBAS)

TTFF Cold Start

26 s

Reacquisition Time

1 s

GPS Modules

1

PLX 2 NS10

Input Voltage

5 V DC to 28 V DC

Power Consumption

< 2 W

PLX 2 NS10

Update rate

Up to 50 Hz (Navigation Data)

Up to 200 Hz (IMU Data)

Output

Euler Angles (Yaw, Pitch, Roll), Quaternion, Position, Velocity, Acceleration, Angular Rate, Time

Interface

RS232, RS422, 1PPS and USB

Serial Protocol

ASCII NMEA, Binary

PLX 2 NS10

Weight

~ 80 gms

Size

45 mm (L) x 45 mm (W) x 20 mm (H)

PLX 2 NS10

Size

45 mm (L) x 45 mm (W) x 20 mm (H)

Operating Temperature

-40 °C to +85 °C

Storage Temperature

-40 °C to +85 °C

Survival Shock

40 g

Operating Vibration

0.04 g2/Hz

IP Protection

IP65

Similar Products

OCT-AHRS

Octantis 2 AHRS

Airworthy AHRS system
OCT 2 Antena

Octantis 2 INS GPS

RTK INS GPS

Applications

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV)

INERTIAL NAVIGATION SYSTEM (INS) FOR UAVThe capabilities of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or Drones are steadily expanding to cover a wide range of applications. UAVs are being used extensively for surveying and mapping, aerial photography, payload carrying, asset inspection, target testing and aerial surveillance applications. Their use for military purposes has gained tremendous attention due to the effectiveness in operating these micro- and mini-drones with stealth in strategically important and environmentally challenging conditions. A UAV is typically equipped with an ‘Autopilot’ to perform the mission goals as per the planned objectives. For controlling, stabilizing and guiding a UAV, the ‘Autopilot’ fetches motion parameters from the Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) or Inertial Navigation Systems (INS) and optionally from LiDAR sensors. These sensors largely contribute to the performance parameters of the ‘Autopilot’ operations. The commercially available UAVs/Drones in the market mostly use the Off-the-Shelf Autopilot Hardware to offer solutions. These consumer grade UAVs use IMUs which are very poor in performance. It is therefore preferred in professional autopilots to integrate external IMU and GPS or use INS instead of using a low-performance built-in IMUs onboard the commercial ‘Autopilot Hardware’.

 

Moreover, the position data from GPS generally comes at 5Hz or 10Hz update rates and when used as an independent sensor to integrate with ‘Autopilot Hardware’ is not satisfactory for high speed manoeuvres of most UAVs for control and guidance. Combining IMU and GPS data to get position, velocity and orientation (attitude and heading) parameters is a tricky problem is already solved by Inertial Navigation Systems (INS) but INSs are typically very expensive even for professional, industrial or military applications.

 

Aeron’s Pollux2 family’s model PLX2-NS10 GNSS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) is specially designed for UAVs or Drones including Quadcopters or multi-copters, fixed-wing, and VTOL drones for control, stabilization and precise way-point guidance applications. It is a tactical class INS that offers uncompromised performance even in short term GPS outages like urban areas, tree canopies, and hilly regions. In Pollux NS10, you get complete tactical navigation solution in a very small SWAP (Size, Weight and Power) and in an affordable cost that makes scalable UAV applications possible. It is equipped with low bias instability gyroscopes, accelerometers, low noise magnetometer, static barometer sensor and a multi-constellation GNSS receiver.

 

Aeron’s proprietary ‘Multi-mode Kalman Filter Based Sensor-Fusion algorithm’ delivers accurate estimates of navigation and control data comprising position, velocities, Euler angles, rates and accelerations. The navigation data is available at update rates of  50Hz, and control data (acceleration and rates) at 200Hz over standard RS232, RS422 and USB interfaces and protocols to handle the high dynamic requirements and integrity aspects.  Unlike most MEMS based INS systems in the market which offer higher update rates however at the cost of not performing proper filtering and estimation, Aeron’s Pollux 2 runs sensor fusion algorithm with all the necessary state estimates to deliver control grade navigation data.

 

The special case of ‘Target Drone’ requirements demands the rugged INS-GPS to sustain the high ‘g’ conditions during the initial launch phase. The system ruggedization is required to handle these types of performance-critical requirements. The PLX2-NS10 INS-GPS is ruggedized to meet such requirements. 

 

The precise position information is also required for the LiDAR-based mapping application for georeferencing. The Pollux2 variant, PLX2-NS20 offers identical inertial performance like the PLX2-NS10 model with an improved position accuracy of 2cm in RTK configuration.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Precision Agriculture

PLX NS30Precision

agriculture is an advanced farm management technique which employs latest technologies to achieve greater efficiency in farming. The careful management of all activities are essential to get the desired yield from the crop. Every available resource and associated activities such as land harvesting, seeding, fertilizers, pesticides, environmental parameters need to be managed precisely. Majority of work revolves around maintenance of the farm while utilizing manual or automated labour for sowing, harvesting and spraying pesticide or fertilizers. The traditional methods are not precise and are time and labour intensive. Overuse of pesticides or fertilizers can make land infertile, affecting the crop’s most basic properties. In addition to this pesticides/fertilizers are toxic chemicals which should ideally not be sprayed manually. Precise tilling is essential to organize the plant seeding for maximization of yield. For doing this and for geofencing it is required to map the land area precisely which demands precise position data.

 

The introduction of GPS/GNSS Navigation Systems has enabled the farmers to utilize the precise position data for various activities. The farm vehicles like tractors equipped with GPS based system can realize the goals of farm management in more coordinated way. A standalone GPS Navigation Systems performance however degrades in poor satellite visibility and multipath conditions. This necessitates the use of GPS/GNSS aided with Inertial Navigation System (INS) to provide the uninterrupted position information in poor visibility, multipath and intermittent signal loss.

 

Aeron’s miniature, PLX2-NS30 is a high performance GPS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) which consists of tactical class 6-axis IMU with and built in multi-channel, multi-constellation GPS/GNSS receiver spatially design to cater the requirements of precision agriculture needs. It comes with standard serial interfaces (RS232/RS422) and CAN interfaces. The device can take speed input from wheel odometer of the vehicle over CAN interface. The speed input is used internally in the Aeron’s proprietary EKF based parameter estimation engine to correct the attitude and position errors and offers 2-3% DT (Distance Travelled) position performance in GPS denied conditions. It also has a built-in magnetic field sensor to provide the independent heading information in absence of GPS/GNSS.

Figure.1 PLX2-NS10 Test results of precision agriculture applications
Figure.1 PLX2-NS10 Test results of precision agriculture applications

 

The PLX2-NS30 offers 2.5 m (CEP) uninterrupted real-time position performance and 0.3° heading information for navigation application. The high accuracy attitude (Roll/Pitch) performance provided by PLX2-NS30 can be utilized for stabilization and control purposes. This makes PLX2-NS30 an idea choice for precision agriculture.  The PLX2-NS30 is high suitable for autonomous tractor due its miniature and high-performance characteristics. The results shown in the figure are recorded on the farm field with PLX2-NS30 installed on a tractor and compared with a higher grade expensive INS system. The PLX2-NS10 was tuned for low dynamic applications. The position accuracy observed is around 1 to 2 m during the test run.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV)

UGV

Autonomous operation of a ground vehicle enables user to execute complex and high-risk tasks with utmost safety and precision. Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV) are being deployed for applications ranging from civilian (such as surveying and mapping) to military such as surveillance and weaponized platforms. The UGVs for surveying and mapping applications demands sub-meter or centimetre positioning accuracies to achieve their mission objectives. For surveillance, the UGVs are equipped with optical sensors like Cameras and LIDARs along with GPS/GNSS systems. A high precision and uninterrupted position information is necessary for geolocating and to realize precise environment mapping in 3D-Space. The position errors or intermittent signal losses directly impact the mapping data and may lead to the incorrect georeferencing on maps. This issue can be addressed by using low cost tactical class Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) to provide seamless positions in the situation where standalone GPS/GNSS accuracies degrade. The degradation in GPS/GNSS may happen due to poor signal visibility, multipaths, and signal outages. These conditions severely affect the position accuracies and limit the user from realising precise position information. Also for beyond visual range operations, UGVs need reliable position and navigation information to correctly control their platform.

Aeron’s state-of-the-art miniature INS-GPS. Model, PLX2-NS20, is a high-performance INS-GPS system designed for UGVs and Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV). It is equipped with multi-constellation RTK GNSS receiver, tactical class MEMS-IMU (cluster of Gyroscopes and Accelerometers), and magnetometer. The device delivers highly accurate attitude (Roll/Pitch), heading and centimetre level (< 2cm) position accuracy in RTK configuration. It provides an uninterrupted position data in short term GPS outages, poor visibility, and multipath conditions with the help of Aeron’s parameter estimation engine. This is achieved by utilizing IMU-GPS sensor fusion during the GPS/GNSS degraded conditions. PLX2-NS20, comes with Aeron’s proprietary EKF sensor fusion algorithm to render precision navigation data. It provides standard interfaces and protocols helps used to integrate PLX2-NS20 with other onboard systems. Aeron offers complete RTK Base-Rover solution along with the PLX2-NS20 for precision positioning applications.

Autonomous mobility is an emerging application area in the military and off-road automotive markets which requires precise navigation and control data for path planning. This data includes orientation, position, velocity and rate information that is GPS independent. The PLX2-NS20 also provides 6-axis precise control parameters (accelerations and angular rates) for navigation, stabilization, and control applications.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS)

ADAS

Road accidents are one of the top contributors to fatalities around the World and road safety is one of the topmost priorities for governments and automobile manufacturers. Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) has emerged as a much needed technology due to the safety and precision it offers reducing human errors while alleviating driving comfort. The ADAS helps driver with an enhanced sense of surrounding taking necessary actions in tricky situations. ADAS system uses sensors as its eyes and ears on the road.

In general, ADAS is an electronic system that consists of sensors like LiDAR, RADAR, Cameras, Pressure Sensor, accelerometers/angular rates sensors, navigation sensors etc. Information from these sensors is used by the autopilot for automatic parking, collision avoidance, surrounding awareness, anti-lock braking system, skid detection, blind spot detection, cruise control, lane change assistance and many more operations to make driving a safe and secure experience. Navigation sensors are an integral part of ADAS system which provide real-time position, speed and orientation data of the vehicle at high update rates.

This data if integrated with digital mapping tools can be used for navigation, traffic alerts and many more things saving precious time for the passengers. At the same time the navigation sensor should be cost effective for use in passenger cars and more reliable and dependable than purely GPS/GNSS based solutions. The advantages of inertial navigation system over GPS/GNSS in urban scenario are, seamless data even in poor satellite visibility, higher update rates for ADAS control and reduced dependency on external factors. For precise positioning, SBAS and RTK feeds from NTRIP servers is desirable.

Aeron’s high-precision, PLX2-NS40, GPS/GNSS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) is exclusively designed for ADAS and autonomous navigation to provide and inertial and precise position data (< 2 cm) at higher update rates in single compact package. PLX2-NS40 has an integrated high performance 6-axis Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU), multi-constellation 72 channel RTK GNSS receiver, in-built pressure sensor and in-built magnetometer. PLX2-NS40 provides attitude (Roll/Pitch), heading acceleration, angular rates, position, velocity, altitude, and time information of the platform.

The operating environment of passenger cars are very dynamic urban scenarios with buildings, tree canopies, hills, tunnels etc which limits use of standalone GPS/GNSS receivers.  Aeron’s PLX2-NS40, INS-GPS is equipped with Aeron’s proprietary EKF sensor fusion algorithm which facilitates to get an uninterrupted navigation and in poor visibility, multipath and GPS/GNSS outages. PLX2-NS40 also accepts the odometer speed data over CAN interface for 2-3% of distance travelled position performance during GPS outages. The PLX2-NS40 offers this superior performance at a cost that makes ADAS applications viable.

Product Documents

POLLUX 2 – NS20 Micro-Miniature RTK INS-GPS System

Micro-Miniature MEMS INS-GPS For Precise Positioning For Aerial And Land Applications

Aeron’s Micro-miniature Pollux 2 INS is a family of compact Inertial Navigation Systems. The system runs Aeron’s proprietary Kalman filter based parameter estimation engine offering near tactical performance providing superior estimates of navigation parameters including position, velocities, attitude and heading. Pollux 2 features tri-axial MEMS solid state accelerometers, tri-axial gyroscopes, barometer for altitude measurement and magnetometer for heading measurement and an integrated multi-constellation GNSS.

 

Pollux 2 is very compact, has low SWAP and can fit in the applications where space is a constraint. The NS20 model  offers centimeter level (<2.5 cm) positioning accuracy with L1 RTK can is suitable for mobile robots, autonomous ground vehicles (AGVs), micro-drones and driverless or driver-assisted vehicles.

Key Features

Centimeter Level Position Accuracy

RTK capability enables its use in surveying and mapping

Near-Tactical Grade Performance

To give highly accurate position info in GNSS denied conditions

Tilt-compensated magnetic compass

Maintains the heading accuracy in GNSS denied and varying attitude conditions

Pollux Ns 20
NS20

External Aiding Inputs

Accepts the external odometer, airspeed aiding data for accurate estimation of navigation parameters in GPS denied conditions

Miniature in size

~80gm (45mm x 45mm x 20mm) making it suitable for a platforms where size/weight are a constraint

High Update Rate

(50Hz Navigation Solution, 200Hz Raw Sensor data) making it suitable for high dynamic applications

Communication

RS232(2CH)/RS422/1PPS

Technical Specifications

PLX 2 NS20

Range

± 16g

PLX 2 NS20

Range

±450°/s

PLX 2 NS20

Range

±8 gauss

PLX 2 NS20

Range

300-1200 hPa

Accuracy

±0.5 hPa

PLX 2 NS20

Roll Range

±180°

Pitch Range

±90°

Roll, Pitch Accuracy

0.1° RMS (static), 0.2° RMS (dynamic)

Angle Resolution

0.01°

PLX 2 NS20

Range

±180°

Accuracy

<0.3° RMS with GNSS in dynamic conditions1
<0.5° RMS with magnetometer2,3

Angle Resolution

0.01°

PLX 2 NS20

Horizontal Position

2.5 cm CEP with L1 RTK,
2 m CEP with L1 GNSS

Vertical Position

5 m (1σ) with GNSS

Velocity

0.2 m/s RMS

PLX 2 NS20

Type

72 channels L1, GNSS (GPS, GLONASS, Beidou, Galileo, SBAS) with RTK

TTFF Cold Start

26 s

Reacquisition Time

1 s

Diff. Correction Type

RTCMv3 (for RTK mode)

GPS Modules

1

PLX 2 NS20

Input Voltage

5 V DC to 28 V DC

Power Consumption

< 2 W

PLX 2 NS20

Update rate

Up to 50 Hz (Navigation Data)

Up to 200 Hz (IMU Data)

Output

Euler Angles (Yaw, Pitch, Roll), Quaternion, Position, Velocity, Linear Acceleration, Angular Rate and Time

Interface

RS232 (CH1), RS232 (CH2), RS422 and 1PPS

Serial Protocol

ASCII NMEA, Binary

PLX 2 NS20

Weight

~ 80 gms

Size

45 mm (L) x 45 mm (W) x 20 mm (H)

PLX 2 NS20

Operating Temperature

-40 °C to +85 °C

Storage Temperature

-40 °C to +85 °C

Survival Shock

40 g

Operating Vibration

0.04 g2/Hz

IP Protection

IP65

Similar Products

OCT-AHRS

Octantis 2 AHRS

Airworthy AHRS system
OCT 2 Antena

Octantis 2 INS GPS

RTK INS GPS

Applications

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV)

INERTIAL NAVIGATION SYSTEM (INS) FOR UAVThe capabilities of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or Drones are steadily expanding to cover a wide range of applications. UAVs are being used extensively for surveying and mapping, aerial photography, payload carrying, asset inspection, target testing and aerial surveillance applications. Their use for military purposes has gained tremendous attention due to the effectiveness in operating these micro- and mini-drones with stealth in strategically important and environmentally challenging conditions. A UAV is typically equipped with an ‘Autopilot’ to perform the mission goals as per the planned objectives. For controlling, stabilizing and guiding a UAV, the ‘Autopilot’ fetches motion parameters from the Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) or Inertial Navigation Systems (INS) and optionally from LiDAR sensors. These sensors largely contribute to the performance parameters of the ‘Autopilot’ operations. The commercially available UAVs/Drones in the market mostly use the Off-the-Shelf Autopilot Hardware to offer solutions. These consumer grade UAVs use IMUs which are very poor in performance. It is therefore preferred in professional autopilots to integrate external IMU and GPS or use INS instead of using a low-performance built-in IMUs onboard the commercial ‘Autopilot Hardware’.

 

Moreover, the position data from GPS generally comes at 5Hz or 10Hz update rates and when used as an independent sensor to integrate with ‘Autopilot Hardware’ is not satisfactory for high speed manoeuvres of most UAVs for control and guidance. Combining IMU and GPS data to get position, velocity and orientation (attitude and heading) parameters is a tricky problem is already solved by Inertial Navigation Systems (INS) but INSs are typically very expensive even for professional, industrial or military applications.

 

Aeron’s Pollux2 family’s model PLX2-NS10 GNSS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) is specially designed for UAVs or Drones including Quadcopters or multi-copters, fixed-wing, and VTOL drones for control, stabilization and precise way-point guidance applications. It is a tactical class INS that offers uncompromised performance even in short term GPS outages like urban areas, tree canopies, and hilly regions. In Pollux NS10, you get complete tactical navigation solution in a very small SWAP (Size, Weight and Power) and in an affordable cost that makes scalable UAV applications possible. It is equipped with low bias instability gyroscopes, accelerometers, low noise magnetometer, static barometer sensor and a multi-constellation GNSS receiver.

 

Aeron’s proprietary ‘Multi-mode Kalman Filter Based Sensor-Fusion algorithm’ delivers accurate estimates of navigation and control data comprising position, velocities, Euler angles, rates and accelerations. The navigation data is available at update rates of  50Hz, and control data (acceleration and rates) at 200Hz over standard RS232, RS422 and USB interfaces and protocols to handle the high dynamic requirements and integrity aspects.  Unlike most MEMS based INS systems in the market which offer higher update rates however at the cost of not performing proper filtering and estimation, Aeron’s Pollux 2 runs sensor fusion algorithm with all the necessary state estimates to deliver control grade navigation data.

 

The special case of ‘Target Drone’ requirements demands the rugged INS-GPS to sustain the high ‘g’ conditions during the initial launch phase. The system ruggedization is required to handle these types of performance-critical requirements. The PLX2-NS10 INS-GPS is ruggedized to meet such requirements. 

 

The precise position information is also required for the LiDAR-based mapping application for georeferencing. The Pollux2 variant, PLX2-NS20 offers identical inertial performance like the PLX2-NS10 model with an improved position accuracy of 2cm in RTK configuration.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Precision Agriculture

PLX NS30Precision

agriculture is an advanced farm management technique which employs latest technologies to achieve greater efficiency in farming. The careful management of all activities are essential to get the desired yield from the crop. Every available resource and associated activities such as land harvesting, seeding, fertilizers, pesticides, environmental parameters need to be managed precisely. Majority of work revolves around maintenance of the farm while utilizing manual or automated labour for sowing, harvesting and spraying pesticide or fertilizers. The traditional methods are not precise and are time and labour intensive. Overuse of pesticides or fertilizers can make land infertile, affecting the crop’s most basic properties. In addition to this pesticides/fertilizers are toxic chemicals which should ideally not be sprayed manually. Precise tilling is essential to organize the plant seeding for maximization of yield. For doing this and for geofencing it is required to map the land area precisely which demands precise position data.

 

The introduction of GPS/GNSS Navigation Systems has enabled the farmers to utilize the precise position data for various activities. The farm vehicles like tractors equipped with GPS based system can realize the goals of farm management in more coordinated way. A standalone GPS Navigation Systems performance however degrades in poor satellite visibility and multipath conditions. This necessitates the use of GPS/GNSS aided with Inertial Navigation System (INS) to provide the uninterrupted position information in poor visibility, multipath and intermittent signal loss.

 

Aeron’s miniature, PLX2-NS30 is a high performance GPS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) which consists of tactical class 6-axis IMU with and built in multi-channel, multi-constellation GPS/GNSS receiver spatially design to cater the requirements of precision agriculture needs. It comes with standard serial interfaces (RS232/RS422) and CAN interfaces. The device can take speed input from wheel odometer of the vehicle over CAN interface. The speed input is used internally in the Aeron’s proprietary EKF based parameter estimation engine to correct the attitude and position errors and offers 2-3% DT (Distance Travelled) position performance in GPS denied conditions. It also has a built-in magnetic field sensor to provide the independent heading information in absence of GPS/GNSS.

Figure.1 PLX2-NS10 Test results of precision agriculture applications
Figure.1 PLX2-NS10 Test results of precision agriculture applications

 

The PLX2-NS30 offers 2.5 m (CEP) uninterrupted real-time position performance and 0.3° heading information for navigation application. The high accuracy attitude (Roll/Pitch) performance provided by PLX2-NS30 can be utilized for stabilization and control purposes. This makes PLX2-NS30 an idea choice for precision agriculture.  The PLX2-NS30 is high suitable for autonomous tractor due its miniature and high-performance characteristics. The results shown in the figure are recorded on the farm field with PLX2-NS30 installed on a tractor and compared with a higher grade expensive INS system. The PLX2-NS10 was tuned for low dynamic applications. The position accuracy observed is around 1 to 2 m during the test run.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV)

UGV

Autonomous operation of a ground vehicle enables user to execute complex and high-risk tasks with utmost safety and precision. Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV) are being deployed for applications ranging from civilian (such as surveying and mapping) to military such as surveillance and weaponized platforms. The UGVs for surveying and mapping applications demands sub-meter or centimetre positioning accuracies to achieve their mission objectives. For surveillance, the UGVs are equipped with optical sensors like Cameras and LIDARs along with GPS/GNSS systems. A high precision and uninterrupted position information is necessary for geolocating and to realize precise environment mapping in 3D-Space. The position errors or intermittent signal losses directly impact the mapping data and may lead to the incorrect georeferencing on maps. This issue can be addressed by using low cost tactical class Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) to provide seamless positions in the situation where standalone GPS/GNSS accuracies degrade. The degradation in GPS/GNSS may happen due to poor signal visibility, multipaths, and signal outages. These conditions severely affect the position accuracies and limit the user from realising precise position information. Also for beyond visual range operations, UGVs need reliable position and navigation information to correctly control their platform.

Aeron’s state-of-the-art miniature INS-GPS. Model, PLX2-NS20, is a high-performance INS-GPS system designed for UGVs and Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV). It is equipped with multi-constellation RTK GNSS receiver, tactical class MEMS-IMU (cluster of Gyroscopes and Accelerometers), and magnetometer. The device delivers highly accurate attitude (Roll/Pitch), heading and centimetre level (< 2cm) position accuracy in RTK configuration. It provides an uninterrupted position data in short term GPS outages, poor visibility, and multipath conditions with the help of Aeron’s parameter estimation engine. This is achieved by utilizing IMU-GPS sensor fusion during the GPS/GNSS degraded conditions. PLX2-NS20, comes with Aeron’s proprietary EKF sensor fusion algorithm to render precision navigation data. It provides standard interfaces and protocols helps used to integrate PLX2-NS20 with other onboard systems. Aeron offers complete RTK Base-Rover solution along with the PLX2-NS20 for precision positioning applications.

Autonomous mobility is an emerging application area in the military and off-road automotive markets which requires precise navigation and control data for path planning. This data includes orientation, position, velocity and rate information that is GPS independent. The PLX2-NS20 also provides 6-axis precise control parameters (accelerations and angular rates) for navigation, stabilization, and control applications.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS)

ADAS

Road accidents are one of the top contributors to fatalities around the World and road safety is one of the topmost priorities for governments and automobile manufacturers. Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) has emerged as a much needed technology due to the safety and precision it offers reducing human errors while alleviating driving comfort. The ADAS helps driver with an enhanced sense of surrounding taking necessary actions in tricky situations. ADAS system uses sensors as its eyes and ears on the road.

In general, ADAS is an electronic system that consists of sensors like LiDAR, RADAR, Cameras, Pressure Sensor, accelerometers/angular rates sensors, navigation sensors etc. Information from these sensors is used by the autopilot for automatic parking, collision avoidance, surrounding awareness, anti-lock braking system, skid detection, blind spot detection, cruise control, lane change assistance and many more operations to make driving a safe and secure experience. Navigation sensors are an integral part of ADAS system which provide real-time position, speed and orientation data of the vehicle at high update rates.

This data if integrated with digital mapping tools can be used for navigation, traffic alerts and many more things saving precious time for the passengers. At the same time the navigation sensor should be cost effective for use in passenger cars and more reliable and dependable than purely GPS/GNSS based solutions. The advantages of inertial navigation system over GPS/GNSS in urban scenario are, seamless data even in poor satellite visibility, higher update rates for ADAS control and reduced dependency on external factors. For precise positioning, SBAS and RTK feeds from NTRIP servers is desirable.

Aeron’s high-precision, PLX2-NS40, GPS/GNSS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) is exclusively designed for ADAS and autonomous navigation to provide and inertial and precise position data (< 2 cm) at higher update rates in single compact package. PLX2-NS40 has an integrated high performance 6-axis Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU), multi-constellation 72 channel RTK GNSS receiver, in-built pressure sensor and in-built magnetometer. PLX2-NS40 provides attitude (Roll/Pitch), heading acceleration, angular rates, position, velocity, altitude, and time information of the platform.

The operating environment of passenger cars are very dynamic urban scenarios with buildings, tree canopies, hills, tunnels etc which limits use of standalone GPS/GNSS receivers.  Aeron’s PLX2-NS40, INS-GPS is equipped with Aeron’s proprietary EKF sensor fusion algorithm which facilitates to get an uninterrupted navigation and in poor visibility, multipath and GPS/GNSS outages. PLX2-NS40 also accepts the odometer speed data over CAN interface for 2-3% of distance travelled position performance during GPS outages. The PLX2-NS40 offers this superior performance at a cost that makes ADAS applications viable.

Product Documents

POLLUX 2 – NS30 Micro-Miniature INS-GPS System

Micro-Miniature MEMS INS-GPS For Precise Positioning In Land Applications

Aeron’s Micro-miniature Pollux 2 INS is a family of extremely compact Inertial Navigation Systems. The systems run extended kalman filter offering near tactical performance providing best estimates of navigation parameters including position, velocities, attitude and heading. Pollux 2 features tri-axial MEMS solid state accelerometers, tri-axial gyroscopes, magnetometer for heading measurement and an integrated multi-constellation GNSS.

 

The PLX2-NS30 model offers 2 m CEP position accuracy and 0.2 m/s velocity accuracy.

 

PLX2-NS30 has a compact size, high performance and comes with CAN interface making it suitable for autonomous ground vehicles, driverless tractors, robots and UGV applications.

Key Features

Miniature in size

~80gm (45mX45mmX20mm) making it suitable for a platforms where size/weight are a constraint making it suitable for a platforms where size is the constraint

Near-Tactical Grade Performance

To give highly accurate position info in GNSS denied conditions

Tilt-compensated magnetic compass

Maintains the heading accuracy in GNSS denied and varying attitude conditions

Pollux2-NS30
NS30

External Aiding Inputs

Accepts the external odometer, airspeed aiding data for accurate estimation of navigation parameters in GPS denied conditions

High Shock Survivability

40g shock sustains promises performance in challenging environments

High Update Rate

(50Hz Navigation Solution, 200Hz Raw Sensor data) making it suitable for high dynamic applications

Communication

RS232, CAN, USB and 1PPS

Technical Specifications

PLX 2 NS30

Range

± 16g

PLX 2 NS30

Range

±450°/s

PLX 2 NS30

Range

±8 gauss

PLX 2 NS30

Range

300-1200 hPa

Accuracy

±0.5 hPa

PLX 2 NS30

Roll Range

±180°

Pitch Range

±90°

Roll, Pitch Accuracy

0.1° RMS (static), 0.2° RMS (dynamic)

Angle Resolution

0.01°

PLX 2 NS30

Range

±180°

Accuracy

<0.3° RMS with GNSS in dynamic conditions1
<0.5° RMS with magnetometer2,3

Angle Resolution

0.01°

PLX 2 NS30

Horizontal Position

2 m CEP with GNSS
1.5 m CEP with SBAS

Vertical Position

5 m (1σ) with GNSS

Velocity

0.2 m/s RMS

PLX 2 NS30

Type

72 channels L1, GNSS (GPS, GLONASS, Beidou, Galileo, SBAS)

TTFF Cold Start

26 s

Reacquisition Time

1 s

GPS Modules

1

PLX 2 NS30

Input Voltage

5 V DC to 28 V DC

Power Consumption

< 2 W

PLX 2 NS30

Update rate

Up to 50 Hz (Navigation Data)

Up to 200 Hz (IMU Data)

Output

Euler Angles (Yaw, Pitch, Roll), Quaternion, Position, Velocity,
Acceleration, Angular Rate and Time

Interface

RS232, CAN (CAN Open), USB and 1PPS

Serial Protocol

ASCII NMEA, Binary

PLX 2 NS30

Weight

~ 80 gms

Size

45 mm (L) x 45 mm (W) x 20 mm (H)

PLX 2 NS30

Operating Temperature

-40 °C to +85 °C

Storage Temperature

-40 °C to +85 °C

Survival Shock

40 g

Operating Vibration

0.04 g2/Hz

IP Protection

IP65

Similar Products

OCT-AHRS

Octantis 2 AHRS

Airworthy AHRS system
OCT 2 Antena

Octantis 2 INS GPS

RTK INS GPS

Applications

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV)

INERTIAL NAVIGATION SYSTEM (INS) FOR UAVThe capabilities of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or Drones are steadily expanding to cover a wide range of applications. UAVs are being used extensively for surveying and mapping, aerial photography, payload carrying, asset inspection, target testing and aerial surveillance applications. Their use for military purposes has gained tremendous attention due to the effectiveness in operating these micro- and mini-drones with stealth in strategically important and environmentally challenging conditions. A UAV is typically equipped with an ‘Autopilot’ to perform the mission goals as per the planned objectives. For controlling, stabilizing and guiding a UAV, the ‘Autopilot’ fetches motion parameters from the Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) or Inertial Navigation Systems (INS) and optionally from LiDAR sensors. These sensors largely contribute to the performance parameters of the ‘Autopilot’ operations. The commercially available UAVs/Drones in the market mostly use the Off-the-Shelf Autopilot Hardware to offer solutions. These consumer grade UAVs use IMUs which are very poor in performance. It is therefore preferred in professional autopilots to integrate external IMU and GPS or use INS instead of using a low-performance built-in IMUs onboard the commercial ‘Autopilot Hardware’.

 

Moreover, the position data from GPS generally comes at 5Hz or 10Hz update rates and when used as an independent sensor to integrate with ‘Autopilot Hardware’ is not satisfactory for high speed manoeuvres of most UAVs for control and guidance. Combining IMU and GPS data to get position, velocity and orientation (attitude and heading) parameters is a tricky problem is already solved by Inertial Navigation Systems (INS) but INSs are typically very expensive even for professional, industrial or military applications.

 

Aeron’s Pollux2 family’s model PLX2-NS10 GNSS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) is specially designed for UAVs or Drones including Quadcopters or multi-copters, fixed-wing, and VTOL drones for control, stabilization and precise way-point guidance applications. It is a tactical class INS that offers uncompromised performance even in short term GPS outages like urban areas, tree canopies, and hilly regions. In Pollux NS10, you get complete tactical navigation solution in a very small SWAP (Size, Weight and Power) and in an affordable cost that makes scalable UAV applications possible. It is equipped with low bias instability gyroscopes, accelerometers, low noise magnetometer, static barometer sensor and a multi-constellation GNSS receiver.

 

Aeron’s proprietary ‘Multi-mode Kalman Filter Based Sensor-Fusion algorithm’ delivers accurate estimates of navigation and control data comprising position, velocities, Euler angles, rates and accelerations. The navigation data is available at update rates of  50Hz, and control data (acceleration and rates) at 200Hz over standard RS232, RS422 and USB interfaces and protocols to handle the high dynamic requirements and integrity aspects.  Unlike most MEMS based INS systems in the market which offer higher update rates however at the cost of not performing proper filtering and estimation, Aeron’s Pollux 2 runs sensor fusion algorithm with all the necessary state estimates to deliver control grade navigation data.

 

The special case of ‘Target Drone’ requirements demands the rugged INS-GPS to sustain the high ‘g’ conditions during the initial launch phase. The system ruggedization is required to handle these types of performance-critical requirements. The PLX2-NS10 INS-GPS is ruggedized to meet such requirements. 

 

The precise position information is also required for the LiDAR-based mapping application for georeferencing. The Pollux2 variant, PLX2-NS20 offers identical inertial performance like the PLX2-NS10 model with an improved position accuracy of 2cm in RTK configuration.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Precision Agriculture

PLX NS30Precision

agriculture is an advanced farm management technique which employs latest technologies to achieve greater efficiency in farming. The careful management of all activities are essential to get the desired yield from the crop. Every available resource and associated activities such as land harvesting, seeding, fertilizers, pesticides, environmental parameters need to be managed precisely. Majority of work revolves around maintenance of the farm while utilizing manual or automated labour for sowing, harvesting and spraying pesticide or fertilizers. The traditional methods are not precise and are time and labour intensive. Overuse of pesticides or fertilizers can make land infertile, affecting the crop’s most basic properties. In addition to this pesticides/fertilizers are toxic chemicals which should ideally not be sprayed manually. Precise tilling is essential to organize the plant seeding for maximization of yield. For doing this and for geofencing it is required to map the land area precisely which demands precise position data.

 

The introduction of GPS/GNSS Navigation Systems has enabled the farmers to utilize the precise position data for various activities. The farm vehicles like tractors equipped with GPS based system can realize the goals of farm management in more coordinated way. A standalone GPS Navigation Systems performance however degrades in poor satellite visibility and multipath conditions. This necessitates the use of GPS/GNSS aided with Inertial Navigation System (INS) to provide the uninterrupted position information in poor visibility, multipath and intermittent signal loss.

 

Aeron’s miniature, PLX2-NS30 is a high performance GPS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) which consists of tactical class 6-axis IMU with and built in multi-channel, multi-constellation GPS/GNSS receiver spatially design to cater the requirements of precision agriculture needs. It comes with standard serial interfaces (RS232/RS422) and CAN interfaces. The device can take speed input from wheel odometer of the vehicle over CAN interface. The speed input is used internally in the Aeron’s proprietary EKF based parameter estimation engine to correct the attitude and position errors and offers 2-3% DT (Distance Travelled) position performance in GPS denied conditions. It also has a built-in magnetic field sensor to provide the independent heading information in absence of GPS/GNSS.

Figure.1 PLX2-NS10 Test results of precision agriculture applications
Figure.1 PLX2-NS10 Test results of precision agriculture applications

 

The PLX2-NS30 offers 2.5 m (CEP) uninterrupted real-time position performance and 0.3° heading information for navigation application. The high accuracy attitude (Roll/Pitch) performance provided by PLX2-NS30 can be utilized for stabilization and control purposes. This makes PLX2-NS30 an idea choice for precision agriculture.  The PLX2-NS30 is high suitable for autonomous tractor due its miniature and high-performance characteristics. The results shown in the figure are recorded on the farm field with PLX2-NS30 installed on a tractor and compared with a higher grade expensive INS system. The PLX2-NS10 was tuned for low dynamic applications. The position accuracy observed is around 1 to 2 m during the test run.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV)

UGV

Autonomous operation of a ground vehicle enables user to execute complex and high-risk tasks with utmost safety and precision. Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV) are being deployed for applications ranging from civilian (such as surveying and mapping) to military such as surveillance and weaponized platforms. The UGVs for surveying and mapping applications demands sub-meter or centimetre positioning accuracies to achieve their mission objectives. For surveillance, the UGVs are equipped with optical sensors like Cameras and LIDARs along with GPS/GNSS systems. A high precision and uninterrupted position information is necessary for geolocating and to realize precise environment mapping in 3D-Space. The position errors or intermittent signal losses directly impact the mapping data and may lead to the incorrect georeferencing on maps. This issue can be addressed by using low cost tactical class Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) to provide seamless positions in the situation where standalone GPS/GNSS accuracies degrade. The degradation in GPS/GNSS may happen due to poor signal visibility, multipaths, and signal outages. These conditions severely affect the position accuracies and limit the user from realising precise position information. Also for beyond visual range operations, UGVs need reliable position and navigation information to correctly control their platform.

Aeron’s state-of-the-art miniature INS-GPS. Model, PLX2-NS20, is a high-performance INS-GPS system designed for UGVs and Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV). It is equipped with multi-constellation RTK GNSS receiver, tactical class MEMS-IMU (cluster of Gyroscopes and Accelerometers), and magnetometer. The device delivers highly accurate attitude (Roll/Pitch), heading and centimetre level (< 2cm) position accuracy in RTK configuration. It provides an uninterrupted position data in short term GPS outages, poor visibility, and multipath conditions with the help of Aeron’s parameter estimation engine. This is achieved by utilizing IMU-GPS sensor fusion during the GPS/GNSS degraded conditions. PLX2-NS20, comes with Aeron’s proprietary EKF sensor fusion algorithm to render precision navigation data. It provides standard interfaces and protocols helps used to integrate PLX2-NS20 with other onboard systems. Aeron offers complete RTK Base-Rover solution along with the PLX2-NS20 for precision positioning applications.

Autonomous mobility is an emerging application area in the military and off-road automotive markets which requires precise navigation and control data for path planning. This data includes orientation, position, velocity and rate information that is GPS independent. The PLX2-NS20 also provides 6-axis precise control parameters (accelerations and angular rates) for navigation, stabilization, and control applications.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS)

ADAS

Road accidents are one of the top contributors to fatalities around the World and road safety is one of the topmost priorities for governments and automobile manufacturers. Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) has emerged as a much needed technology due to the safety and precision it offers reducing human errors while alleviating driving comfort. The ADAS helps driver with an enhanced sense of surrounding taking necessary actions in tricky situations. ADAS system uses sensors as its eyes and ears on the road.

In general, ADAS is an electronic system that consists of sensors like LiDAR, RADAR, Cameras, Pressure Sensor, accelerometers/angular rates sensors, navigation sensors etc. Information from these sensors is used by the autopilot for automatic parking, collision avoidance, surrounding awareness, anti-lock braking system, skid detection, blind spot detection, cruise control, lane change assistance and many more operations to make driving a safe and secure experience. Navigation sensors are an integral part of ADAS system which provide real-time position, speed and orientation data of the vehicle at high update rates.

This data if integrated with digital mapping tools can be used for navigation, traffic alerts and many more things saving precious time for the passengers. At the same time the navigation sensor should be cost effective for use in passenger cars and more reliable and dependable than purely GPS/GNSS based solutions. The advantages of inertial navigation system over GPS/GNSS in urban scenario are, seamless data even in poor satellite visibility, higher update rates for ADAS control and reduced dependency on external factors. For precise positioning, SBAS and RTK feeds from NTRIP servers is desirable.

Aeron’s high-precision, PLX2-NS40, GPS/GNSS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) is exclusively designed for ADAS and autonomous navigation to provide and inertial and precise position data (< 2 cm) at higher update rates in single compact package. PLX2-NS40 has an integrated high performance 6-axis Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU), multi-constellation 72 channel RTK GNSS receiver, in-built pressure sensor and in-built magnetometer. PLX2-NS40 provides attitude (Roll/Pitch), heading acceleration, angular rates, position, velocity, altitude, and time information of the platform.

The operating environment of passenger cars are very dynamic urban scenarios with buildings, tree canopies, hills, tunnels etc which limits use of standalone GPS/GNSS receivers.  Aeron’s PLX2-NS40, INS-GPS is equipped with Aeron’s proprietary EKF sensor fusion algorithm which facilitates to get an uninterrupted navigation and in poor visibility, multipath and GPS/GNSS outages. PLX2-NS40 also accepts the odometer speed data over CAN interface for 2-3% of distance travelled position performance during GPS outages. The PLX2-NS40 offers this superior performance at a cost that makes ADAS applications viable.

Product Documents

POLLUX 2 – NS40 Micro-Miniature RTK INS-GPS System

Micro-Miniature MEMS INS-GPS With RTK For Precise Positioning In Land Applications

Aeron’s Micro-miniature Pollux 2 INS is a family of extremely compact Inertial Navigation Systems. The systems run extended kalman filter offering near tactical performance providing best estimates of navigation parameters including position, velocities, attitude, and heading. Pollux 2 features tri-axial MEMS solid state accelerometers, tri-axial gyroscopes, magnetometer for heading measurement and an integrated multi-constellation GNSS.

Pollux 2 has a compact size, high performance and comes with CAN interface making it suitable for autonomous ground vehicles, driverless tractors, robots and UGV applications. The PLX2-NS40 model offers centimeter level (2.5 cm) position accuracy in RTK mode and 0.2 m/s velocity accuracy.

Key Features

Centimeter Level Position Accuracy

RTK capability enables its use in surveying and mapping

Near-Tactical Grade Performance

To give highly accurate position info in GNSS denied conditions

Tilt-compensated magnetic compass

Maintains the heading accuracy in GNSS denied and varying attitude conditions

Pollux2-NS40
NS40

External Aiding Inputs

Accepts the external odometer, airspeed aiding data for accurate estimation of navigation parameters in GPS denied conditions

Miniature in size

~80gm (45mX45mmX20mm) making it suitable for a platforms where size/weight are a constraint making it suitable for a platforms where size is the constraint

High Update Rate

(50Hz Navigation Solution, 200Hz Raw Sensor data) making it suitable for high dynamic applications

Communication

RS232(2CH)/CAN/RS422/USB/1PPS

Technical Specifications

PLX 2 NS40

Range

± 16g

PLX 2 NS40

Range

±450°/s

PLX 2 NS40

Range

±8 gauss

PLX 2 NS40

Range

300-1200 hPa

Accuracy

±0.5 hPa

PLX 2 NS40

Roll Range

±180°

Pitch Range

±90°

Roll, Pitch Accuracy

0.1° RMS (static), 0.2° RMS (dynamic)

Angle Resolution

0.01°

PLX 2 NS40

Range

±180°

Accuracy

<0.3° RMS with GNSS in dynamic conditions1
<0.5° RMS with magnetometer2,3

Angle Resolution

0.01°

PLX 2 NS40

Horizontal Position

2.5 cm CEP with L1 RTK,
2 m CEP with L1 GNSS

Vertical Position

5 m (1σ) with GNSS

Velocity

0.2 m/s RMS

PLX 2 NS40

Type

72 channels L1, GNSS (GPS, GLONASS, Beidou, Galileo, SBAS) with RTK

TTFF Cold Start

26 s

Reacquisition Time

1 s

Diff. Correction Type

RTCMv3 (for RTK mode)

GPS Modules

1

PLX 2 NS40

Input Voltage

5 V DC to 28 V DC

Power Consumption

< 2 W

PLX 2 NS40

Update rate

Up to 50 Hz (Navigation Data)

Up to 200 Hz (IMU Data)

Output

Euler Angles (Yaw, Pitch, Roll), Quaternion, Position, Velocity,
Linear Acceleration, Angular Rate and Time

Interface

RS232 (CH1), RS232 (CH2), CAN, USB, 1PPS

Serial Protocol

ASCII NMEA, Binary

PLX 2 NS40

Weight

~ 80 gms

Size

45 mm (L) x 45 mm (W) x 20 mm (H)

PLX 2 NS40

Operating Temperature

-40 °C to +85 °C

Storage Temperature

-40 °C to +85 °C

Survival Shock

40 g

Operating Vibration

0.04 g2/Hz

IP Protection

IP65

Similar Products

OCT-AHRS

Octantis 2 AHRS

Airworthy AHRS system
OCT 2 Antena

Octantis 2 INS GPS

RTK INS GPS

Applications

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV)

INERTIAL NAVIGATION SYSTEM (INS) FOR UAVThe capabilities of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or Drones are steadily expanding to cover a wide range of applications. UAVs are being used extensively for surveying and mapping, aerial photography, payload carrying, asset inspection, target testing and aerial surveillance applications. Their use for military purposes has gained tremendous attention due to the effectiveness in operating these micro- and mini-drones with stealth in strategically important and environmentally challenging conditions. A UAV is typically equipped with an ‘Autopilot’ to perform the mission goals as per the planned objectives. For controlling, stabilizing and guiding a UAV, the ‘Autopilot’ fetches motion parameters from the Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) or Inertial Navigation Systems (INS) and optionally from LiDAR sensors. These sensors largely contribute to the performance parameters of the ‘Autopilot’ operations. The commercially available UAVs/Drones in the market mostly use the Off-the-Shelf Autopilot Hardware to offer solutions. These consumer grade UAVs use IMUs which are very poor in performance. It is therefore preferred in professional autopilots to integrate external IMU and GPS or use INS instead of using a low-performance built-in IMUs onboard the commercial ‘Autopilot Hardware’.

 

Moreover, the position data from GPS generally comes at 5Hz or 10Hz update rates and when used as an independent sensor to integrate with ‘Autopilot Hardware’ is not satisfactory for high speed manoeuvres of most UAVs for control and guidance. Combining IMU and GPS data to get position, velocity and orientation (attitude and heading) parameters is a tricky problem is already solved by Inertial Navigation Systems (INS) but INSs are typically very expensive even for professional, industrial or military applications.

 

Aeron’s Pollux2 family’s model PLX2-NS10 GNSS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) is specially designed for UAVs or Drones including Quadcopters or multi-copters, fixed-wing, and VTOL drones for control, stabilization and precise way-point guidance applications. It is a tactical class INS that offers uncompromised performance even in short term GPS outages like urban areas, tree canopies, and hilly regions. In Pollux NS10, you get complete tactical navigation solution in a very small SWAP (Size, Weight and Power) and in an affordable cost that makes scalable UAV applications possible. It is equipped with low bias instability gyroscopes, accelerometers, low noise magnetometer, static barometer sensor and a multi-constellation GNSS receiver.

 

Aeron’s proprietary ‘Multi-mode Kalman Filter Based Sensor-Fusion algorithm’ delivers accurate estimates of navigation and control data comprising position, velocities, Euler angles, rates and accelerations. The navigation data is available at update rates of  50Hz, and control data (acceleration and rates) at 200Hz over standard RS232, RS422 and USB interfaces and protocols to handle the high dynamic requirements and integrity aspects.  Unlike most MEMS based INS systems in the market which offer higher update rates however at the cost of not performing proper filtering and estimation, Aeron’s Pollux 2 runs sensor fusion algorithm with all the necessary state estimates to deliver control grade navigation data.

 

The special case of ‘Target Drone’ requirements demands the rugged INS-GPS to sustain the high ‘g’ conditions during the initial launch phase. The system ruggedization is required to handle these types of performance-critical requirements. The PLX2-NS10 INS-GPS is ruggedized to meet such requirements. 

 

The precise position information is also required for the LiDAR-based mapping application for georeferencing. The Pollux2 variant, PLX2-NS20 offers identical inertial performance like the PLX2-NS10 model with an improved position accuracy of 2cm in RTK configuration.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Precision Agriculture

PLX NS30Precision

agriculture is an advanced farm management technique which employs latest technologies to achieve greater efficiency in farming. The careful management of all activities are essential to get the desired yield from the crop. Every available resource and associated activities such as land harvesting, seeding, fertilizers, pesticides, environmental parameters need to be managed precisely. Majority of work revolves around maintenance of the farm while utilizing manual or automated labour for sowing, harvesting and spraying pesticide or fertilizers. The traditional methods are not precise and are time and labour intensive. Overuse of pesticides or fertilizers can make land infertile, affecting the crop’s most basic properties. In addition to this pesticides/fertilizers are toxic chemicals which should ideally not be sprayed manually. Precise tilling is essential to organize the plant seeding for maximization of yield. For doing this and for geofencing it is required to map the land area precisely which demands precise position data.

 

The introduction of GPS/GNSS Navigation Systems has enabled the farmers to utilize the precise position data for various activities. The farm vehicles like tractors equipped with GPS based system can realize the goals of farm management in more coordinated way. A standalone GPS Navigation Systems performance however degrades in poor satellite visibility and multipath conditions. This necessitates the use of GPS/GNSS aided with Inertial Navigation System (INS) to provide the uninterrupted position information in poor visibility, multipath and intermittent signal loss.

 

Aeron’s miniature, PLX2-NS30 is a high performance GPS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) which consists of tactical class 6-axis IMU with and built in multi-channel, multi-constellation GPS/GNSS receiver spatially design to cater the requirements of precision agriculture needs. It comes with standard serial interfaces (RS232/RS422) and CAN interfaces. The device can take speed input from wheel odometer of the vehicle over CAN interface. The speed input is used internally in the Aeron’s proprietary EKF based parameter estimation engine to correct the attitude and position errors and offers 2-3% DT (Distance Travelled) position performance in GPS denied conditions. It also has a built-in magnetic field sensor to provide the independent heading information in absence of GPS/GNSS.

Figure.1 PLX2-NS10 Test results of precision agriculture applications
Figure.1 PLX2-NS10 Test results of precision agriculture applications

 

The PLX2-NS30 offers 2.5 m (CEP) uninterrupted real-time position performance and 0.3° heading information for navigation application. The high accuracy attitude (Roll/Pitch) performance provided by PLX2-NS30 can be utilized for stabilization and control purposes. This makes PLX2-NS30 an idea choice for precision agriculture.  The PLX2-NS30 is high suitable for autonomous tractor due its miniature and high-performance characteristics. The results shown in the figure are recorded on the farm field with PLX2-NS30 installed on a tractor and compared with a higher grade expensive INS system. The PLX2-NS10 was tuned for low dynamic applications. The position accuracy observed is around 1 to 2 m during the test run.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV)

UGV

Autonomous operation of a ground vehicle enables user to execute complex and high-risk tasks with utmost safety and precision. Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV) are being deployed for applications ranging from civilian (such as surveying and mapping) to military such as surveillance and weaponized platforms. The UGVs for surveying and mapping applications demands sub-meter or centimetre positioning accuracies to achieve their mission objectives. For surveillance, the UGVs are equipped with optical sensors like Cameras and LIDARs along with GPS/GNSS systems. A high precision and uninterrupted position information is necessary for geolocating and to realize precise environment mapping in 3D-Space. The position errors or intermittent signal losses directly impact the mapping data and may lead to the incorrect georeferencing on maps. This issue can be addressed by using low cost tactical class Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) to provide seamless positions in the situation where standalone GPS/GNSS accuracies degrade. The degradation in GPS/GNSS may happen due to poor signal visibility, multipaths, and signal outages. These conditions severely affect the position accuracies and limit the user from realising precise position information. Also for beyond visual range operations, UGVs need reliable position and navigation information to correctly control their platform.

Aeron’s state-of-the-art miniature INS-GPS. Model, PLX2-NS20, is a high-performance INS-GPS system designed for UGVs and Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV). It is equipped with multi-constellation RTK GNSS receiver, tactical class MEMS-IMU (cluster of Gyroscopes and Accelerometers), and magnetometer. The device delivers highly accurate attitude (Roll/Pitch), heading and centimetre level (< 2cm) position accuracy in RTK configuration. It provides an uninterrupted position data in short term GPS outages, poor visibility, and multipath conditions with the help of Aeron’s parameter estimation engine. This is achieved by utilizing IMU-GPS sensor fusion during the GPS/GNSS degraded conditions. PLX2-NS20, comes with Aeron’s proprietary EKF sensor fusion algorithm to render precision navigation data. It provides standard interfaces and protocols helps used to integrate PLX2-NS20 with other onboard systems. Aeron offers complete RTK Base-Rover solution along with the PLX2-NS20 for precision positioning applications.

Autonomous mobility is an emerging application area in the military and off-road automotive markets which requires precise navigation and control data for path planning. This data includes orientation, position, velocity and rate information that is GPS independent. The PLX2-NS20 also provides 6-axis precise control parameters (accelerations and angular rates) for navigation, stabilization, and control applications.

Inertial Navigation System (INS) For Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS)

ADAS

Road accidents are one of the top contributors to fatalities around the World and road safety is one of the topmost priorities for governments and automobile manufacturers. Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) has emerged as a much needed technology due to the safety and precision it offers reducing human errors while alleviating driving comfort. The ADAS helps driver with an enhanced sense of surrounding taking necessary actions in tricky situations. ADAS system uses sensors as its eyes and ears on the road.

In general, ADAS is an electronic system that consists of sensors like LiDAR, RADAR, Cameras, Pressure Sensor, accelerometers/angular rates sensors, navigation sensors etc. Information from these sensors is used by the autopilot for automatic parking, collision avoidance, surrounding awareness, anti-lock braking system, skid detection, blind spot detection, cruise control, lane change assistance and many more operations to make driving a safe and secure experience. Navigation sensors are an integral part of ADAS system which provide real-time position, speed and orientation data of the vehicle at high update rates.

This data if integrated with digital mapping tools can be used for navigation, traffic alerts and many more things saving precious time for the passengers. At the same time the navigation sensor should be cost effective for use in passenger cars and more reliable and dependable than purely GPS/GNSS based solutions. The advantages of inertial navigation system over GPS/GNSS in urban scenario are, seamless data even in poor satellite visibility, higher update rates for ADAS control and reduced dependency on external factors. For precise positioning, SBAS and RTK feeds from NTRIP servers is desirable.

Aeron’s high-precision, PLX2-NS40, GPS/GNSS aided Inertial Navigation System (INS-GPS) is exclusively designed for ADAS and autonomous navigation to provide and inertial and precise position data (< 2 cm) at higher update rates in single compact package. PLX2-NS40 has an integrated high performance 6-axis Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU), multi-constellation 72 channel RTK GNSS receiver, in-built pressure sensor and in-built magnetometer. PLX2-NS40 provides attitude (Roll/Pitch), heading acceleration, angular rates, position, velocity, altitude, and time information of the platform.

The operating environment of passenger cars are very dynamic urban scenarios with buildings, tree canopies, hills, tunnels etc which limits use of standalone GPS/GNSS receivers.  Aeron’s PLX2-NS40, INS-GPS is equipped with Aeron’s proprietary EKF sensor fusion algorithm which facilitates to get an uninterrupted navigation and in poor visibility, multipath and GPS/GNSS outages. PLX2-NS40 also accepts the odometer speed data over CAN interface for 2-3% of distance travelled position performance during GPS outages. The PLX2-NS40 offers this superior performance at a cost that makes ADAS applications viable.

Product Documents

Articles

FAQ

In order to get correct magnetic heading from the device, calibration of the magnetic sensor is necessary. The calibration needs to be performed once after installation or if there is any change in mounting of nearby objects.

Yes, the magnetometer can be turned OFF if the INS is mounted in a changing magnetic flux environment or if the magnetic heading parameter is not desired.

The magnetometer calibration procedure is easy and can be carried out using the Aeron’s INS Software utility. The process is explained in detail in the user manual.

Yes, the sensors used in PLX are temperature calibrated.

Yes, the orientation of PLX2-NS10 is configurable. The device can be mounted orthogonally for any axis combination. The orientation can be changed using Aeron’s INS Software utility.

The default baud rate for PLX2-NS10 is 115200. The maximum possible baud rate is 460800.

Yes, the minimum operating voltage for the device is +5 V DC, and so it can be powered up using a laptop.

PLX2-NS10 has 3 output ports, USB, RS232 and RS422. Data can be taken on all these ports simultaneously and in desired output format (NMEA / Binary)

GNSS antenna, Configuration cable and carry case are the standard accessories included with the PLX2 device.

When used in rover mode and RTK correction from base station are available, PLX2-NS20 can give accuracies upto centimeter level. So, yes, it can be used for surveying.

If the RTCM v3 messages mentioned in the user manual are enabled in the base station, then L1 or L1/L2 RTK base station will work.

In order to get correct magnetic heading from the device, calibration of the magnetic sensor is necessary. The calibration needs to be performed once after installation or if there is any change in mounting of nearby objects.

Yes, the magnetometer can be turned OFF if the INS is mounted in a changing magnetic flux environment or if the magnetic heading parameter is not desired.

The magnetometer calibration procedure is easy and can be carried out using the Aeron’s INS Software utility. The process is explained in detail in the user manual.

Yes, the sensors used in PLX are temperature calibrated.

Yes, the orientation of PLX2-NS20 is configurable. The device can be mounted orthogonally for any axis combination. The orientation can be changed using Aeron’s INS Software utility.

The default baud rate for PLX2-NS20 is 115200. The maximum possible baud rate is 460800.

Yes, the minimum operating voltage for the device is +5 V DC, and so it can be powered up using a laptop.

PLX2-NS20 has 2 output ports, RS232 and RS422. Data can be taken on all these ports simultaneously and in desired output format (NMEA / Binary)
GNSS antenna, Configuration cable and carry case are the standard accessories included with the PLX2 device.
SAE J1939 protocol is used to send over the CAN interface.
Data is available on RS232, USB and CAN interface.
In order to get correct magnetic heading from the device, calibration of the magnetic sensor is necessary. The calibration needs to be performed once after installation or if there is any change in mounting of nearby objects.
SAE J1939 protocol is used to send over the CAN interface.
Data is available on RS232_CH1, USB and CAN interface. RS232_CH2 (second RS232 interface) is dedicated for receiving differential corrections from RTK base station.
In order to get correct magnetic heading from the device, calibration of the magnetic sensor is necessary. The calibration needs to be performed once after installation or if there is any change in mounting of nearby objects.

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